Pacific arts celebrated and honoured

  • Maggie Barry
  • Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga
Pacific Peoples Arts, Culture and Heritage

The amazing range of Pacific arts in New Zealand was celebrated tonight at an award ceremony in Wellington.

Minister for Pacific Peoples Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga congratulated all the winners of the Creative New Zealand Arts Pasifika Awards 2014.

“These awards acknowledge the excellence and innovation in Pacific arts in New Zealand,” says Mr Lotu-Iiga. “They are the only national awards to recognise Pacific artists across a range of art forms.

“There is so much to celebrate in New Zealand’s vibrant Pacific arts scene. The range of arts and cultural forms currently being practised here is astounding.”

Award winners include internationally recognised tattoo artist Steve Ma Ching, who has tattooed many sportsmen including Sonny Bill Williams, and the Sinakiteu Women Development Group, which was formed by a group of Tongan women in response to the Christchurch earthquakes.

Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage Maggie Barry says: “These are an outstanding example of the significant contribution Pacific artists make to New Zealand’s cultural life, and to our communities. The diversity of creativity being recognised is to be applauded.”

Offered annually since 1996 the Arts Pasifika Awards are an opportunity for Creative New Zealand to encourage and celebrate excellence in Pacific arts in New Zealand. The awards recognise Pacific artists across a range of art forms,from contemporary to heritage, and across a range of stages in the artists’ careers, from emerging to established.